Jones’ Coach Confused By UFC 239 Scorecard
For the first time in his career, Jon Jones would lose on a scorecard, as Thiago Santos would win one of the three cards at UFC 239 earlier this month.
Jones, who has been dominant throughout his career, had not lost on a single scorecard leading up to his light heavyweight title defense, and Jones’ coach Brandon Gibson, has no clue why one judge would score the fight 48-47 in Santos’ favor.
“I was surprised,” Gibson told MMA Fighting on Monday. “It is part of our job as coaches and trainers to be aware of how a round could have gone. We knew the first round was ultra-competitive but I thought [rounds] 2 through 5 were clearly Jon and I thought we were up.
“We weren’t asking Jon to coast or fight safe or anything like that or protect the lead. We’re always hunting. I was surprised that one judge saw it that way and I was a little surprised some media members I really respect saw it in Thiago’s favor.”
“I just think I have a view as good as any judge during the fight and I thought Jon’s pressure, his feints, his volume, his defense, won us that fight,” Gibson said in assessment of the fight . “Thiago missed a lot on his counters but maybe the judges thought they were landing.”
“They were glancing shots, they were shots that were hitting Jon’s chest or Jon’s shoulders but Thiago came hard to fight for sure.”
“Santos was countering a lot of the fight and had his back against the fence and when he threw, he threw big and with volume combinations and it would make the crowd erupt,” Gibson continued.
“Maybe the judges thought that was the more aggressive action of the fight but I think it’s hard to fight that style with your back against the fence for the majority of the fight and just getting picked apart.”
“We really concentrated on our defense for this fight and I think that showed in Jon’s performance,” Gibson said of the five round main event from the T-Mobile Arena.. “We were really prepared to take the fight anywhere, whether it stayed a long range kickboxing bout, whether we were in boxing range or the clinch or whether we went to the ground.
“The way those five rounds, it primarily played out as a kickboxing contest. Rarely did those guys clinch. I don’t think there was any takedowns attempted. Jon went in there toe-to-toe with one of the best kickboxers in the light heavyweight division and engaged in a kickboxing match for 25 minutes.”